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Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn Study Guide & Plot Summary

John L. Smith
This Study Guide consists of approximately 81 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Running Scared.
This section contains 490 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn Study Guide

Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn Summary & Study Guide Description

Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion and a Free Quiz on Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn by John L. Smith.

Plot Summary

The prologue of Running Scared: the Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn by John L. Smith begins with the destruction of the Dunes Hotel and Casino. The famous hotel was going to be imploded whenever Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn gave the signal. The destruction of the Dunes would prove to be symbolic in that the old Las Vegas was no more and the new Las Vegas had arrived.

Later, the author would refer to Wynn and his relationship with Michael Milken and the inception of the new Las Vegas. Smith says that Jimmy Hoffa was the face of old Las Vegas, Milken was the face of the new Las Vegas. It didn't seem to matter that Milken had served time.

The author recounts Steve's academic career and also supplies testimonials from people who knew him. Elaine Pascal is introduced as being the daughter of Michael Pascal, a friend of Mike Wynn's. The men developed a scheme to play matchmaker for their children; a scheme that eventually worked.

The real action begins after the death of Mike Wynn. Steve began to take advantage of his father's old contacts. First he met Charlie Meyerson, a man who would become a major player in Wynn's life. Next were a bookie named Herbie Liebert and Maurice Friedman, a mob conduit and con artist. It was due to the relationships with Friedman and Goldman that Wynn was able to purchase his first piece of Las Vegas with a three percent share of the Frontier Hotel for some of $45,000. Although it took five years, Zelma and Steve continued to pay off Mike's debts.

After Steve's first purchase of stocks in the Frontier, things began to happen. With the help of E. Parry Thomas, Wynn bought his first business, a liquor distributor. After selling the business at a profit, Wynn broke into the casino scene. Wynn was unstoppable. It is no surprise that at age thirty, Wynn was being referred to as a Las Vegas "wunderkind."

Smith discusses Wynn's professional status.

Wynn began to have the majority of his troubles when he had to explain his business to various gaming commissions and licensing boards. Many of the regulatory agencies were new and Wynn would benefit from the inexperience. Licensure, overall, was a joke. It seemed that almost anyone could get a license. There were a few exceptions, but Wynn almost always prevailed. Only the refusal of the license for the London casino would haunt Wynn.

Wynn's business escalated when he was introduced to junk bond king Michael Milken. Over the years in Vegas, Wynn had many multi-million dollar successes and ended up as a billionaire.

The only real issue with the book is that there are an exorbitant number of people involved throughout Wynn's career. All of the main players had to be mentioned, but the number of persons involved makes it somewhat difficult to follow the story.

Read more from the Study Guide

This section contains 490 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn Study Guide
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Running Scared: The Life and Treacherous Times of Las Vegas Casino King Steve Wynn from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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